School of Politics and International Relations

Dr Lee Jones, Universities pressured to cut Myanmar ties over Rohingya crisis

2 November 2017

Universities across the world are under increasing pressure to break ties with institutions in Myanmar in the wake of the country’s military crackdown on Rohingya Muslims. “Withdrawing projects now would be pointless virtue-signalling. It would have no impact whatsoever on the way the Myanmar authorities are behaving,” said QMUL’s Dr Lee Jones. “Myanmar’s education system is in a truly atrocious state and help is desperately needed. Adequate education is one way that the racist and xenophobic attitudes and historically false beliefs driving the Rohingya crisis can gradually be challenged and changed.” On the other side of the debate is Professor Penny Green, who said that universities should be “boycotting all government institutions in Myanmar”, including higher education providers. “It’s a genocide and we should have nothing to do with Myanmar,” she said.
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Dr Jones also commented on the issue in Internazionale (pdf available on request)
Last week Dr Jones was on BBC World News discussing the King of Thailand’s funeral